If my ex and I are on a home loan are we both legally obligated to make the monthly mortgage payments?

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If my ex and I are on a home loan are we both legally obligated to make the monthly mortgage payments?

I am a primary borrower and my ex is a co-borrower. I have made monthly payments on my own for 9 or 10 months now. I am in the process of assuming the loan but it is a costly option. Since she is on the loan as well, is she just as obligated as I am to make sure that the monthly payments are made? If so, how would I go about making her help pay for them?

Asked on October 4, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Alabama

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

If she is a signatory on the loan, she is as legally obligated for the payments as you are. If she will not pay her share, you could sue her to force her to contribute. That's the good news; the bad news is that a lawsuit, with its own attendent costs (e.g. legal fees) is the only way to do this. Still, for a home loan, the amount of money at stake is almost certainly enough to more than justify the cost of an attorney, so you should consult with a lawyer (note: many will provide a free initial consultation to evaluate whether a case is worth pursuing) to discuss the matter. Another option, which you could discuss with a family lawyer (such as whichever lawyer handled your divorce) is whether there is a way that you could pay the full amount, but take your ex's share as a credit against alimony, support, etc. that you may owe her. Good luck.


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